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8 Ideas to Keep Customers Coming Back to Your Studio Amid Inflation

By Maria Prokopowicz

Inflation is a normal economic occurrence, but it’s no secret that, recently, inflation rates have risen much faster than in typical years. As a business owner and consumer, you’ve probably noticed some of the effects, from increased gas prices to grocery bills. During times like these, it’s standard for people to adjust their spending behaviour, cutting back on non-essentials like dining out or Disney+ subscriptions. But one thing is for sure: Most individuals consider wellness more essential than ever. 

In a recent Mindbody survey, a whopping 85% of consumers said they plan to maintain or even increase their spending on in-person fitness. So, while this isn’t the moment to panic as a fitness business owner, it's a great time to place a spotlight on the value of your business and the services you provide. Make sticking with your studio a no-brainer by anticipating your customers’ potential financial concerns and offering a variety of membership options. Consider some of the following membership and retention strategies to not only keep current members but entice new ones to join—even when purse strings are tightened.  

1. Offer long-term memberships at a discount

Give your members an incentive to stick around for the long haul by reducing your rates the longer they sign up for. For example, you might charge members who sign up for a 12-month contract 10% less per month than if they sign up for a month-to-month membership.

2. Create an “off-peak” membership option

Fill up mid-morning and early afternoon classes with a discounted membership that only serves your least busy hours. This is a budget-friendly option that's especially great for folks with more flexible schedules, such as students and people who work from home.

3. Supplement your client base with ClassPass

Now is an excellent time to give ClassPass a try for your studio. Why? It gives users the flexibility to discover and try new classes and studios with pricing tiers that fit their budgets. Even better, it expands visibility of your studio, brings potential new clients through your doors, and helps you fill class spots with fitness enthusiasts who are eager to get to know your business.

4. Lean into hybrid memberships

While the pandemic made virtual and hybrid memberships a necessity for fitness studios, the market for these options hasn’t gone away. Providing an option that allows clients to split their time between in-person and virtual classes (at a lower price point than all in-person) caters to both people who value flexibility and who may need to pull back on their spending.  

5. Take advantage of Dynamic Pricing

Promote your business, fill up classes, and increase your revenue with the magic (and science) of Dynamic Pricing. When you opt in, our algorithm automatically adjusts your class prices based on a variety of factors, from class popularity to time of day to even the weather. You’ll stay in control and can update your settings at any time, and we’ll use data to price your classes at rates that are most likely to draw in clients.

6. Extend your intro offers

A great introductory offer is one of the best ways to hook new members. By expanding your offer from perhaps one week to one month or three classes to six, you’ll give new clients more time to fall in love with your business and make it part of their routine.  

7. Reward loyal members with additional perks

These days, every dollar spent is precious, and many people are re-evaluating where their money is going. Highlight the value of remaining a member at your studio by rewarding those who stay after certain time milestones. For example, you could provide a perk at six months (like a buddy pass), a reward at one year (like a free private session), and so on. 

8. Sell family or couples memberships

Don’t lose valuable clients because they can’t or don’t want to pay for several individual memberships in a household. Consider member options that cater to families, such as a parent’s option that includes free childcare during classes. Or offer a newlywed membership that gives a discount to recently married couples—solidifying your studio in their newly combined budget.  

The impact of inflation varies from person to person, but almost everyone is feeling it in some way. As consumers take a critical eye to their budgets and look for opportunities to curb spending, you want to make sure your fitness studio remains in the “essentials” column. By adding value to your membership options through perks and rewards, loyalty discounts, and more, you can showcase why sticking with your studio is a worthwhile wellness expense.  

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About the author:

Maria Prokopowicz mindbody headshot

Maria Prokopowicz

Marketing Content Specialist

Mindbody

Maria Prokopowicz is a North Carolina native, UNC Chapel Hill graduate, and current Chicago resident. A wordsmith at heart, she is an experienced content writer and SEO specialist with a passion for telling brands’ stories by capturing their unique voices. When she’s not at work, you can find Maria running along Chicago’s lakefront trail, trying out new fitness studios, or searching for the best nachos Chi Town has to offer.

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